Doing dissertation research

It is important that you establish a research problem at, or close to the start of, your project. Once you have created your plan it is a good idea to show it to someone else. Because it's that time of year again — dissertation time. The research is still valid even though you are now aware of the greater size and complexity of the problem. Write these goals down and share them with your advisor. Surf through various articles relevant to your research using electronic indexing services; easily accessible online.

Try describing it as a research problem that sets out:. You should always talk to your supervisor before you make any substantial revision to your plans, and explain why you think you need to make the change.

Although a dissertation is an opportunity for you to work independently, you will usually be allocated a member of academic staff as a supervisor. Some people find that they procrastinate more than they would like. How can we reduce youth unemployment? If you're printing from your room, "paper jam" will come to be the most dreaded two words in the English language.

Mostly, statistical data is available on government websites where it can easily be accessed. Limit your research to a proportion that is manageable for you. Spend time with loved ones without the stress of unfinished research hanging over you.

What steps will the government take in the coming year to reduce the tax burden? This is a much better research problem as it establishes an argument existence of public transport may have some influence on new housing development. Write and make notes about what new things you learn. They usually include both a main research question which is the fundamental question you are exploring and sub-questions which assist you in answering the main question.

However, you can use the gaps to help identify where you need to begin work. If the practical considerations associated with your research ideas are unrealistic, you need to consider whether you are willing to modify or reconsider your project. However, it is still quite general and could be improved by further focus.

Some research question categories do not lend themselves well for formulating a main research question. Block out the weeks when you know you will be unable to work, and mark in other main commitments you have that will take time during this period.

Decide which research methods you can begin immediately, and which will have to wait. A dissertation is a particular kind of academic task.

You may need to cut back on your hours at work or spend less time with loved ones. Don't even try and give up biscuits for Lent, they'll basically become their own food group when you're too busy to cook and desperate for sugar.

There are many systems that support effective data collection and retrieval. What will cause it to happen? This sets out your research field but does not frame a research problem because it is too general. If you need to perform an experiment, begin planning your experiments now, so that they can be successful and efficient when you perform them later.

Make sure to keep a personal record of all the searches you made and all the data acquired. Already answered Not a question Bad question Other. Develop a system for storing data. You will make this large subject manageable by focusing on a limited period of time onwards , and limited sources. Once you start reading, ensure that you think about what you are trying to get out of each article or book that you read.

This is where planning is vital. Or you may need to take weekends off from research to let your mind relax a bit. Did this article help you? You will be investigating a complex subject public transport in Scotland , but will be focusing on only one aspect of it possible influence on new housing development. Remember that you can not achieve everything in your dissertation.

It can be helpful to create a reverse calendar, which means working backward from your final deadline to see when different steps must be done by. In many cases, framing questions cannot be tackled until explanatory questions are answered.

Large calendars like whiteboards can help you look at the big picture, and many people enjoy the tactile aspect of adding and erasing things as a way to show progress. Spend time reflecting on the implications that your pilot study might have for your research project, and make the necessary adjustment to your plan. Some courses schedule the dissertation at the end, while others have it running along concurrently with other modules.

By continuing to use our site, you agree to our cookie policy. Someone who has been through this process will likely have a good idea of how much time a given type of research can take. Personal tools Web Editor Log in. Why do leaves change color in the fall? Your decision may be guided by the kind of research you want or are required to do. Search Site only in current section. Your advisor likely knows other professors or experts who would be useful to your research.

Research is, by its nature, unpredictable. This can be difficult, but if everyone understands your needs and your limits, making these sacrifices can be a little easier.